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Love Your Smile with Dr. Sujata Bhatia

By Staff | Dec 27, 2012

Question: I have two granddaughters, ages 9 and 11. I am trying to decide on a meaningful gift for them this Christmas. I want to know if orthodontia would be worth the money I would need to have them both treated.

Thank you so much for asking a question that I have always wanted to answer. My journey to be an orthodontist started because I was a shy teenager with crooked teeth. I would hang out at the back at parties because I was too afraid to smile. Then my mother took me to the local orthodontist. As my teeth got straighter, my confidence grew. When my braces came off, I knew that I wanted to change lives by giving people a new smile.

There are times when there is a question as to the value of orthodontic care, and we often hear comments such as, “Wow, that’s expensive,” or, “I didn’t realize it would cost so much.” Parents today are faced with financial challenges, and the cost of straightening teeth can seem like a difficult choice. The fact is that a new smile is more affordable than ever.

Here is an analogy: in 1966, a Volkswagen and braces both cost about $1,700. To have the buying power of that $1,700 in 1966, you would have to spend $12,000 in 2012. A new VW Beetle costs about $20,000.

If orthodontics had kept up with inflation the way the Beetle has, the range of fees today would start at $12,000. Orthodontic fees average about $5,000. Therefore, the cost has actually been cut in half. This has caused more and more teenagers and pre-teenagers to wear braces and Invisalign today. Invisalign is the new way to straighten teeth without the hassle of metal and wires, and in our office, it is the same cost as the metal and clear braces. Although fees vary according to the complexity and time involved with each individual case, we have many different payment plans, so everyone can have the smile they deserve.

So, give the gift of confidence the gift of a new smile. It is the gift that keeps on giving, and it’s a great investment in the future of your granddaughters’ lives

It has been my honor to provide orthodontic care to the residents of Maui County for the last six years. To have the opportunity to touch the lives and improve the confidence and self-worth of our children and adults has been a blessing to my staff and me.

At what age should a child get an orthodontic screening? Following the recommendation of the American Association of Orthodontics, every child should have an orthodontic evaluation by age seven. Dr. Bhatia can monitor the child through a “Growth & Guidance” program. Early evaluation can significantly reduce the need for removal of permanent teeth and bring about positive facial results that would only be possible while the face and jaws are still growing.

Dr. Bhatia invites you to tour Kihei and Lahaina Orthodontics in the comfort of your home by visiting the websites at www.kiheiorthodonticsmaui.com or www.lahainaorthodonticsmaui.com.

When you come in for your complimentary consultation, you will meet her helpful staff along with mascots Emma and Micah, Dr. Bhatia’s chocolate labs.

Kihei-Lahaina Orthodontics’ mission statement says it best: “We strive to provide the best that orthodontic technology can offer, with the best that humanity can offer. We build kindness one smile at a time because we believe that a warm smile is the universal language of kindness!”